Barton Auxiliary awards scholarships |

Barton Auxiliary awards scholarships

Dan Thrift/Tahoe Daily TribuneCathy Vogelgesang, Barton Memorial Hospital Auxiliary vice president, center, presents $1,000 scholarships to Brett Schussel, George Whittell High School, left, and Galen Breisacher, South Tahoe High School. Recipients not pictured are Erik Olson, Douglas High School, and Brenna O'Connor, Lake Tahoe Community College.

Barton Memorial Hospital Auxiliary annually supports scholarships for youth from both California and Nevada, for tomorrow’s health care givers. The scholarships of $1,000 each that were given to four students this year will help with their college expenses in the coming year.

Health care workers are in short supply and health care needs are on the rise. With that need, school-age children, teenagers and young adults are being introduced to careers as prospective nurses, doctors and technicians of the future. The four chosen this year all have an interest in pursuing careers in the medical field. The four chosen this year all have an interest in pursuing careers in the medical field. The schools the students represent are Douglas, South Tahoe and Whittell high schools and Lake Tahoe Community College.

nErik J. Olson, Douglas High School.

Olson has been accepted by the University of California, San Diego and University of Nevada, Reno. He will be majoring in biology (pre-med) and medical research (forensics.)

“I want to make a difference in people’s lives and in this world, and that is why I’ve chosen to pursue a medical career. Doctors have the greatest ability to change the lives of thousands and even millions of people. Being responsible for improving someone’s life is the best reward and satisfaction that I could possibly get out of any career. My medical career could consist of becoming a neurosurgeon down through the specializations to a family physician or being involved in forensics and medical research,” Olson said.

nGalen Ryan Breisacher, South Tahoe High School.

Aiken has been accepted by the University of California, Santa Barbara and Saint Mary’s College of California and will be majoring in biochemistry chemistry.

“My interest in the health care profession lies in anesthesiology. By being a superior anesthesiologist I will be able to provide patients with the best health care possible. I believe the patients’ needs should always be the health care providers’ first priority. My number one interest is helping people and making them live longer, happier lives,” Aiken said.

nBrett Schussel, Whittell High School.

Schussel has applied to Azusa Pacific University and Point Loma University and plans to major in physical therapy.

“I decided on physical therapy as a possible career path because of my interest in the prevention and rehabilitation of injuries. I have been a patient at Barton Hospital and at orthopedic clinics and have received excellent care. The support of physical therapy has assisted me in two major parts of my life — skiing and baseball. As a skier and baseball player, my knees were under constant pressure and it was very important for me to follow the instructions outlined by a therapist in order to continue to do what I love. Working with physically challenged skiers sparked my interest in physical therapy. The therapist can make an important impact in a person’s life, both mentally and physically. I know that I have a positive attitude to help motivate others to do their best,” Schussel said.

nBrenna O’Connor, Lake Tahoe Community College.

O’Connor has been accepted by San Diego State University and will major in nursing.

“My admiration for the medical field began as a young teenager when I volunteered my time at Barton Memorial Hospital as a candy striper. Years later, I decided to take the Certified Nursing Assistant training course at Lake Tahoe Community College. Immediately after I finished the course, I was hired as a full-time nursing assistant at Barton Hospital in the skilled nursing facility. I have there for almost three years and the love and dedication I have for medical care has only grown over these past few years. Not only have I learned how to deal with many situations involving patients, family and the doctors, I also learned about the importance of quality care for each individual. I have learned about the political aspect of medicine and hospital administration. I believe it is very important to understand how it all works and how I can insure the best care for my patients. I plan on becoming a registered nurse first and then plan to continue my education to become a nurse practitioner or physician’s assistant,” O’Conner said.

For more information on the Barton Memorial Hospital Auxiliary scholarship program contact Pearl Parks at (530) 573-1416.

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